Edun Adegboyega

Edun in motor with Alake
Edun Adegboyega (beside driver) in motor car with Gbadebo I, the sovereign of Egba Kingdom. Photo: Intelligencer

Edun Adegboyega was the secretary of the Egba United Government from 1902 to 1918. He was born in June 1860 as Jacob Henryson Samuel, but changed his name by assuming his ancestral name in 1904. Edun was educated in Richmond College, England and the University of London. As an ordained minister in the Methodist Church he served as Principal of Wesleyan Boy’s High School, Lagos from 1893 to 1902. Soon after his appointment and through his influence, the European Merchants’ factories were established at Ibara in Abeokuta. Although his tenure of service was of marked progress in the annals of Egba government, he became unpopular for his alleged role in the Ijemo Massacre, following the call of Ijemo people for his dismissal owing to his rumored role in the death of an activist, Sobiyi Polande.

Edun is believed by a few to have been unjustly maligned, but History professor, Akinjide Osuntokun writes that Edun together with the British Commissioner of Egba, P.V. Young behaved in the most inhuman way in their treatment of Polande, a 90-year old man at the time of his ordeal. To save the situation which snowballed into confrontation between the Alake, the Ogboni chiefs and Ijemo residents, Edun had arranged the Lagos government, in the name of the Alake, to interfere in the affairs of what was supposed to be a sovereign state, thus sacrificing the 1893 treaty preserving Egba autonomy. Edun retired in 1918 and died seven years later, at 65.

Tope Apoola
Profession: Writer